IndyCar – Friday Action at Indy

Friday was the final practice before this weekend’s resumption of qualifying at the brickyard, and it was a day full of intrigue.

image courtesy
image courtesy

Mike Conway was cleared to drive by the IRL’s medical staff this morning. He sustained a mild concussion which prompted the series to let him sit for a few days before taking a brain scan this morning to compare it with his baseline results observed before the season started. Mike was still running at the tail end of the field in speeds, so this weekend promises to be very challenging as they prepare the car for Indy.  It is still possible that D&R pull Mike out of the car if it looks like he will not qualify, but they are intent on sticking with him for now.

Also announced today was Dale Coyne’s new driver, Tomas Scheckter. Bruno Juniquiera was expected to fill that second seat at Coyne alongside Justin Wilson since Bruno has reportedly been running for Dale the last couple of years for no pay. Needless to say, Bruno was reportedly unhappy with this decision. But lets not take anything away from Tomas, he is fast and knows his way around Indy. Lets just hope Dale has invested in reinforced half shafts.

With the addition of Tomas to the Coyne outfit, we are now up to 35 car/driver combinations. It remains to be seen if anybody else will field a car this weekend. The most likely additions would be a second car from Conquest or a third car from Foyt.  Nothing is out of the realm of possibility, but don’t expect to see a second car from Sarah Fisher’s team or anything from Marty Roth.  See the end of this article for an updated driver/team list.

6sms1635-2345As for practice today, well, it was relatively uneventful until the end of the day.  During the last hour, several of the top teams were out on track putting in race simulations with entries from Penske, Ganassi, AGR, Luczo Dragon, Newman Haas and KV running in a large group.  However, practice was called to an early halt for debris on the track when a brick was sucked up by a passing car from the venerable yard in front of the flagstand.  This happened with about a half hour to go until the gun.  Repairs could not immediately be affected, so the practice was called to an early halt.

Qualifying resumes tomorrow from noon – 6pm eastern time for positions 23-33.  Sunday will bring about Bump Day from noon – 6pm as well.

Here are the times from today’s runners:

1. (9) Scott Dixon, Dallara-Honda, 222.799
2. (5) Mario Moraes, Dallara-Honda, 222.530
3. (8) Townsend Bell, Dallara-Honda, 222.139
4. (3T) Helio Castroneves, Dallara-Honda, 221.699
5. (6T) Ryan Briscoe, Dallara-Honda, 221.567
6. (10) Dario Franchitti, Dallara-Honda, 221.192
7. (17) Oriol Servia, Dallara-Honda, 221.140
8. (20) Ed Carpenter, Dallara-Honda, 221.063
9. (11T) Tony Kanaan, Dallara-Honda, 220.924
10. (06T) Robert Doornbos, Dallara-Honda, 220.804
11. (34T) Alex Tagliani, Dallara-Honda, 220.804
12. (2T) Raphael Matos, Dallara-Honda, 220.781
13. (02) Graham Rahal, Dallara-Honda, 220.677
14. (27) Hideki Mutoh, Dallara-Honda, 220.668
15. (19) Tomas Scheckter, Dallara-Honda, 220.516
16. (4) Dan Wheldon, Dallara-Honda, 220.510
17. (41) A.J. Foyt IV, Dallara-Honda, 220.379
18. (12T) Will Power, Dallara-Honda, 220.255
19. (67) Sarah Fisher, Dallara-Honda, 220.193
20. (7) Danica Patrick, Dallara-Honda, 219.735
21. (44) Davey Hamilton, Dallara-Honda, 219.699
22. (26) Marco Andretti, Dallara-Honda, 219.570
23. (43) John Andretti, Dallara-Honda, 219.551
24. (13) E.J. Viso, Dallara-Honda, 219.530
25. (21T) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Dallara-Honda, 219.517
26. (98) Stanton Barrett, Dallara-Honda, 219.499
27. (99) Alex Lloyd, Dallara-Honda, 219.336
28. (24) Mike Conway, Dallara-Honda, 219.234
29. (91) Buddy Lazier, Dallara-Honda, 219.190
30. (23) Milka Duno, Dallara-Honda, 218.367
31. (00) Nelson Philippe, Dallara-Honda, 217.956

And here is an updated entry list.  Note that the Roth and Fisher TBA’s are highlighted, simply because it does not look like any attempt is being made at filling those cars.

Team # Driver
AJ Foyt Enterprises 14 Vitor Meira
AJ Foyt Enterprises 41 AJ Foyt IV
AJ Foyt Enterprises 48 TBA
Andretti Green Racing 7 Danica Patrick
Andretti Green Racing 11 Tony Kanaan
Andretti Green Racing 26 Marco Andretti
Andretti Green Racing 27 Hideki Mutoh
Ganassi/Sam Schmidt 99 Alex Lloyd
Conquest Racing 34 Alex Tagliani
Conquest Racing 36 TBA
CURB/Agajanian/Team 3G 98 Stanton Barrett
Dale Coyne Racing 18 Justin Wilson
Dale Coyne Racing 19 Tomas Scheckter
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 23 Milka Duno
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 24 Mike Conway
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 44 Davey Hamilton
Petty/Dreyer & Reinbold 43 John Andretti
Hemelgarn Johnson 91 Buddy Lazier
HVM Racing 00 Nelson Philippe
HVM Racing 13 EJ Viso
KV Racing Technology 5 Mario Moraes
KV Racing Technology 8 Townsend Bell
KV Racing Technology 15 Paul Tracy
Luczo Dragon Racing 2 Raphael Matos
Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing 2 Graham Rahal
Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing 6 Robert Doornbos
Panther Racing 4 Dan Wheldon
Panther Racing 16 Scott Sharp
Rahal Letterman Racing 17 Oriol Servia
Roth Racing 25 TBA
Roth Racing 52 TBA
Sarah Fisher Racing 67 Sarah Fisher
Sarah Fisher Racing 68 TBA
Target Chip Ganassi Racing 9 Scott Dixon
Target Chip Ganassi Racing 10 Dario Franchitti
Team Penske 3 Helio Castroneves
Team Penske 6 Ryan Briscoe
Penske Racing 12 Will Power
Vision Racing 20 Ed Carpenter
Vision Racing 21 Ryan Hunter-Reay

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